November 20, 2013LISBON — Greg Williams has offered martial arts services in the North Country for many years. He recently decided to move his business, Kaze Dojo, from Lisbon to Lancaster. Williams added that Peter Rizzo will offer personal training services in the same Depot Street building soon to house Kaze Dojo.
Renovation of the building is ongoing. "We'll move in December 1," Williams said last week. He spoke with the Lancaster selectmen on November 4.
In discussing his background, Williams noted, "I've owned martial arts schools for 20 years." With time in New York and Los Angeles, Willams added, "I am passionate about self defense."
Teaching self-defense seems like a natural choice for Williams. He holds black belts in five different disciplines.
The interest in moving to Lancaster springs from Williams' busy days. He lives in Dalton, and has an eighth-grade daughter in Lancaster. He often makes two trips between Lancaster and Lisbon each day. "I'm in Lancaster twice a day," Williams noted. "It's very appealing to be there."
Williams also has a daughter at Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania.
Kaze Dojo has been based in the Evergreen Sports building for five years. He noted a great relationship with Evergreen. Prior to being in Lisbon, Williams had good success in Whitefield, as well. "The support I have had is tremendous," he said.
With less commute time on the horizon, Williams intends to offer classes during the morning and day, he said. He is excited about the move, which is seen as an opportunity to reach a new group of students.
"I've always tried to be well rounded," Williams said. He has an interest in many areas, including jujitsu, mixed martial arts, and overall fitness. "Strength and conditioning is a very large piece of the puzzle," Williams noted.
Attracting the young to martial arts has been important to Williams. He has a peewee program for those ages four to seven.
A devotion to kids does not stop there. Williams has served as a substitute teacher at White Mountains Regional High School. Additionally, he is interested in anti-bullying work. He sees the subject as a way to build confidence and self-esteem in kids. It is important, Williams said, to help teens "navigate through the difficult time of adolescence."
"Ultimately," Williams continued, "my goal is to have a positive impact on people's lives."
Being in the North Country has many advantages over the big city life Williams knew. "I like the pace", he said. "I like the closeness with people, too." Williams believes the region provides an opportunity "to raise my kids in a more wholesome environment."